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Daddy’s Girl’s Guilty As Hell

The lonely legacy of CATHOLIC GUILT: A woman’s soul imprisoned

Susan Ni Rahilly: suZenYoga: 11.50 euro

Digital eBook 222 pages

ISBN 09535667-1-4: Publication Date: December 9th 2010


Published for the first time in Ireland. Now available as a digital eBook from the website. (Originally published in the UK April 2001).

Compelling, sensitive and honest, Daddy’s Girl’s Guilty As Hell is a controversial book in which Susan Ni Rahilly bravely questions one of the biggest institutions in the world. “Its been 10 years since I finshed writing this book and I think the time is now right to release it in Ireland. I hope it helps women cope with these tense and confusing times – bringing some hope to calm all the fears and anxiety of our current climate.”


DON’T SHOOT THE MESSENGER, says Susan. I know it’s a controversial book, she says, just because it’s Catholic Guilt it’s controversial. But it’s a sign of the times that we deal with issues like this now – both the power of the media and publishing have helped enormously in changing our awareness and bringing issues like this to light. “I know my book will cause debate and some of it is pretty hard to digest, especially spiritual damage – which is anything done in the name of God – but this is my true story and the hard and touching truths of many other Catholic women. We’ve had no choice but to challenge the way we were brought up, in the Catholic way of fear and guilt. But don’t forget if you take away the taboo stuff about religion and God, and the power of the Church, Guilt is just a health issue – and it needs healing.”


The author simply states that the Catholic institution is no different from other large organisations. It suffers from corruption, misuse of power, distorted teaching and the Catholic authority should take responsibility and acknowledge the damage it has done. Susan Ni Rahilly reveals countless shocking and deeply disturbing examples of how sickness pervades the Catholic institution.


Strong, sensitive, compassionate and funny, this vivacious author writes with honesty and voyeuristic insight into her own abusive childhood, her many illnesses, broken relationships, financial hardship and finally a nervous breakdown at the age of 40. In telling her own story and documenting those of other Catholic women, she picks apart the Catholic values which get deeply ingrained in childhood – and exposes the effects of the Catholic way of life.


“It’s good for the soul to challenge and see the illusion and delusion in the myths you were brought up with – to grow, a soul needs to rebel and reject outdated rules – such as ‘Honour Thy Father . . .’ It’s very damaging to expect children to be respectful of their families when there’s violence in the house. There was nobody to talk to about abuse at home, which was quite normal in the large Catholic families in my parish in Yorkshire. The teachers at school were mostly nuns who didn’t have any experience of life. They were so busy trying to save our souls that they could not see what we were suffering.”


Many women’s lives have been severely limited as a result of living with guilt and conforming to Catholic expectations. “When you’re born guilty you end up being guilty about being alive and being yourself – you might just as well put your soul in a prison cage and throw away the key – because your life is only half-lived” says Susan.


“Treat a child like a criminal and you’ll reap what you sow – tell someone they’re guilty from the moment they’re born and you get people who grow up to have no confidence in themselves. And very low self-esteem. The bottom line is you have no chance of being a healthy and energetic woman living a life full of potential if you’re bearing the heavy burdens of other people’s guilt.”


Susan Ni Rahilly offers realistic and sensible advice to enable women to reach their potentials. The messages in this book are powerful and life changing. With searing insight Susan writes in an unashamedly direct and conversational style; at times hilarious; at times deadly serious. Daddy’s Girl’s Guilty as Hell reads like a bodice-ripper as she takes her readers on a soul-baring, roller-coaster ride through the myths, misunderstandings and damaging messages of the Catholic Way – to appreciating the miracle of having a woman’s soul.


This is a book the reader will not be able to put down as she embarks upon a journey from the lonely legacy of Catholic Guilt towards liberation.

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